Austin restaurants: Where to dine with large groups

The holiday season can often mean dining with large groups of family and friends. From private rooms in fancy steakhouses to massive outdoor patios, in Austin you have plenty of choices when it comes to dining with a large group. Not included: the numerous corporate steakhouses, which you can always count on for private dining spaces. The restaurants labeled with an asterisk are my critic’s picks. For more restaurants broken down by category, as well as my Top 100 restaurants in Austin, visit

*The Apartment. 1204 W. Lynn St. 512-477-5584, This new venue from the McGuire Moorman group is located above Jeffrey’s and can be reserved for breakfast, lunch, dinner, cocktail hour and meetings. It seats up to 20 people and offers standing room for up to 30. Prices vary. For more details or to make reservations, contact

Banger’s. 79 Rainey St. 512-386-1656, The outdoor beer garden and sausage house can accommodate groups starting at eight people, as well as entire buyouts of the beer garden. Interested parties should contact

Bullfight. 4807 Airport Blvd. 512-474-2029, Shawn Cirkiel’s Spanish-influenced restaurant serves family-style meals for large groups, priced at $34 per person, with seating inside and outside available. A la carte service is also offered.

Canon + Belle. 500 E. Fourth St. 512-482-8000, The Southern comfort restaurant at the Hilton can host parties of 10-20 in the main dining room and can handle even larger parties with the connected biergarten space. Reverbery bar downstairs serves food from the restaurant and has a customizable space and patio for group gatherings.

Dine. 111 E. Cesar Chavez St. 512-478-2991, Chef David Garrido’s restaurant not only offers stunning views of Lady Bird Lake but also can seat up to 40 in the dining room.

*Driskill Grill. 604 Brazos St. 512-391-7162, The fine dining restaurant in the Driskill Hotel can accommodate private dining for groups of 10 to 40 people. The restaurant offers customizable prix fixe menus starting at $80 per person. A sommelier is available to provide wine pairings for any menu.

Easy Tiger. 709 E. Sixth St. 512-614-4972, The bakery and beer garden can seat groups of up to 15 at communal tables with no reservation required. For larger groups, the Waller Creek patio and deck are available for parties of 15 to 60, with tables starting at $250. Email for details.

*Emmer & Rye. 51 Rainey St #110. 512-366-5530, Chef Kevin Fink’s restaurant, one of the 10 best in town, has a back dining area that can be curtained off to seat 14 people.

Fixe. 500 W. Fifth St. 512-888-9133, The large Southern restaurant in the IBC Bank building has multiple options for groups, with three private dining areas that can seat eight, 12 and 24 guests. The largest of the rooms even has A/V capabilities and a large-screen television.

*Fonda San Miguel. 2330 W. North Loop Blvd. 512-459-4121, Austin’s long-running temple to interior Mexican has a grand back dining room that can seat up to 30 people.

*Freedmen’s. 2402 San Gabriel St. 512-220-0953, The barbecue restaurant and cocktail bar accepts reservations in its courtyard (which can be heated) for groups of 10-30 people.

Fresa’s. 1703 South First St. 512-992-2946, The South First location of this restaurant that started as a drive-thru on North Lamar Boulevard has a large courtyard made for group gatherings and a menu that includes whole rotisserie chickens and grilled meat by the pound perfect for family-style service.

Geraldine’s. 605 Davis St. 512-476-4755, The buzzy restaurant on the fourth floor of the Hotel Van Zandt can accommodate groups of any size, with customizable service of large-format dishes and small plates.

Hudson’s on the Bend. 3509 RM 620 N. 512-266-1369, The revamped fine dining restaurant at the edge of the Hill Country can accommodate groups of 12 in its dining room.

Irene’s. 506 West Ave. 512-298-0853, The adult clubhouse hang has a variety of options for large groups, from tables that seat 12 (with a $250 food and beverage minimum) to buyouts of the entire patio (which seats 175) for $3,000.

Italic. 123 W. Sixth St. 512-660-5390, The Italian restaurant near Sixth Street and Congress Avenue can create family-style menus starting at $25 per person for groups of 13 or more and also offers a sound-proof private dining room that can be rented out with a food and beverage minimum of $2,000. Email for more information.

*Jeffrey’s. 1204 W. Lynn St. 512-477-5584, One of the most exclusive rooms in town, the Napoleon Room at this posh steakhouse can seat up to 12. The entire restaurant can also be bought out for a cocktail event for 120 or dinner for 75.

*Josephine House. 1601 Waterston Ave. 512-477-5584, Jeffrey’s elegant kid sister can hold up to 26 people for a seated dinner and more for cocktail events, weather permitting.

Juliet. 1500 Barton Springs Road. 512-479-1800, This Italian stunner offers several secluded dining areas, including a room at the front of the restaurant than seats 10 or more guests. The large patio can also be used for large parties.

Lamberts. 401 W. Second St. 512-494-1500, You’ve got options here. The fancy barbecue joint can accommodate up to 70 guests for a private dinner, while a full buyout of the restaurant will allow for 160 people. The upstairs hosts cocktail events for 85 people, while the outdoor patio can hold up to 50 for a cocktail event or 36 for a seated dinner.

*Olamaie. 1610 San Antonio St. 512-474-2796, One of Austin’s best restaurants, chef Michael Fojtasek’s Southern beauty has a private back room that can be curtained off for large parties. Guests can choose communal seating or multiple tables.

Olive & June. 3411 Glenview Ave. 512-467-9898, This modernist Italian treehouse has a private dining room perched out of site on the top floor. Email for details.

*Parkside. 301 E. Sixth St. 512-474-9898, The upstairs of this hip Sixth Street haunt can be used for large groups. Email for details.

Red Ash. 303 Colorado St #200. 512-379-2906, The Italian grill from the founders of Eddie V’s has an upstairs area that can seat groups of up to 14 people.

The Salt Lick. 18300 RM 1826. 512-858-4959, One of the most iconic barbecue restaurants in Texas has a variety of indoor and outdoor seating arrangements for groups from 10 to more than 200. In addition to the main dining areas, there are the Salt Lick Cellars, Pecan Grove and Thurman’s Mansion spaces available for large private events, weddings and corporate gatherings.

Searsucker. 415 Colorado St. 512-394-8000, This massive Warehouse District restaurant from celebrity chef Brian Malarkey has multiple areas that can be cordoned off for large groups.

Sophia’s. 500 W. Sixth St. 512-580-9990, This subterranean Italian supper club from Chicago owners has a private dining cove that can seat up to eight and a semi-private dining room for groups up to 60 people.

Trace. 200 Lavaca St. 512-542-3660, The restaurant at the W has a private dining room at the back of the restaurant that can seat up to 20 people. Buyouts of the patio and outdoor lounge are also available.

*Uchiko. 4200 N. Lamar Blvd. 512-916-4808, One of Austin’s most consistently excellent fine dining experiences offers a private dining area in the back that can be divided to seat 14 in each room or opened up for a dinner for 34. Customizable menus and drink pairings are available, and the room is equipped with a state-of-the-art audiovisual system.

Vox Table. 1100 S. Lamar Blvd. 512-375-4869, The modernist New American restaurant in the Lamar Union complex can handle parties of up to 20 people in its dining room.

Waller Creek Pub House. 603 Sabine St. 512-358-1903, This pub located on the banks of Waller Creek can accommodate 60 people in its semi-private dining room and patio.

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